A Story of Resilience
The cause of Palestine runs deep in Sarah Musa, author of My Garden over Gaza. Her father hails from Silwan, near Jerusalem, and her husband’s family is from Gaza.
“Falasteen as a whole is a cause close to my heart,” Sarah says. “It’s part of who I am; it’s in my blood.”
As for Gaza, she’s long wanted to write a story about the place. “Specifically Gaza became part of my passion just from watching all of these attacks over the past 15-20 years just keep repeating and repeating and repeating. It breaks my heart every single time, and it just keeps happening.”
Published in 2022, My Garden over Gaza has become essential reading during the ongoing genocide, and it has been translated into multiple languages in read-aloud form.
Sarah is so grateful she had the opportunity to write this book. “It was meant to be part of the narrative that helped the children of the world learn about Gaza.”
Before writing the story, Sarah struggled to find the right angle. She wanted to inform children about the suffering of the people of Gaza in an age-appropriate way. Finally, the idea of telling the story through a rooftop garden came to her.
This idea merged Sarah’s love for gardening—she used to live on a farm in New Mexico and grows mint in her rooftop garden—with her knowledge that crops in Palestine are sprayed with herbicide to limit resources.
In the story, Noura takes care of her father’s rooftop garden—a source of fresh food for her family and a reminder of the land they left behind. When a drone sprays herbicide on her plants, she has to come to terms with this loss and find the resilience she needs to plant again.
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